By Kyra Gillespie
The theme for International Women’s Day 2019 was ‘More Powerful Together’, an anthem that couldn’t be more apt when it comes to team sports, Aligned Leisure Manager Paige Kristalyn explains.
“Our facilities bring people together, teach discipline and camaraderie, and gives people of all ages a sense of belonging,” she said.
To mark IWD, Paige opened up about being a woman in a leadership role, gender equity in sport and what the day means to her.
– What inspired you to become involved in sport?
I first got involved in the sport and leisure industry while completing my studies in public health and health promotion, allowing the community to be active through sport and leisure nicely complimented my degree. Through my time in this industry I have learnt there are far greater health outcomes rather than just physical health.
– You’re now the manager of Aligned Leisure – have there been any moments where being a woman in a leadership role has proven difficult?
Being in a leadership can be difficult at times, regardless of gender. I am lucky enough to work for an organisation that respects both women and men equally and who have supported my professional development since beginning with them in 2016.
– What does International Women’s Day mean to you personally?
For me International Women’s Day is a chance to celebrate all women and their successes. It is also a great way to further increase gender equity on a globally scale.
– Do you think we have achieved gender equality in sport? What could we be doing differently?
We have certainly come a long way in terms of equality in sport. Female participation is at an all time high, in fact across sports at our sites it is almost an even balance. There is a great momentum at the moment around changing the way we think and speak to become a more equitable society. We hope to be a part of this, We will be rolling out a campaign at our centers shortly that focuses on equity in sport #hecansoshecantoo
– What advice would you have for other women looking to take on leadership roles?
GO FOR IT! Be authentic and the best that you can be and no one will be able to refuse you!
– Is there a woman, or group of women, that you look up to?
There are many women that I have looked up to over the years. First and foremost my Mum, sister and Nan who were/still are strong women, with great work ethic and values. As well as that there are some more historical figures whose stories inspire me – Eva Perón (better known as Evita), Princess Diana and Margaret Thatcher to name a few.